Information for Postal Voters at the Scottish Parliament Election on Thursday 6 May 2021

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Voting by post

If you have not received your postal voting pack by 23 April 2021 you can get in touch with us to ask for a replacement pack. Phone our helpline for advice

Tel:  (01294) 324710

You should complete and return your postal vote as soon as you can so that it can be processed. Your postal vote must be received by the Constituency Returning Officer by 10.00 p.m. on Thursday 6 May 2021.

If you are unable to post it in time to meet this deadline you can hand it in at Council Headquarters reception (during office hours), Cunninghame House, Irvine, KA12 8EE. As Cunninghame House is not currently open due to COVID-19 restrictions, please telephone our helpline on Tel: (01294) 324710 to arrange a time for delivery.  On the day of the election you can hand it in to any polling place within the Constituency.

Your postal vote pack will contain

  • two ballot papers, one for Constituency (lilac) and one for Regional (peach)
  • a postal voting statement, which is attached to;
  • an 'A' envelope to put your completed ballot papers in
  • a 'B' envelope to return your 'A' envelope and postal voting statement with completed ballot papers enclosed;
  • instructions for completing your postal vote

How to Vote by Post

You must complete and return your postal voting statement with your ballot papers, or your votes will not be counted. Full instructions are in the vote pack. If you need help with the instructions, phone our helpline for advice.

Voting is by means of a single [X] against the individual of your choice on the Constituency (lilac) paper or the party of your choice on the Regional (peach) paper.

Tel: (01294) 324710

Please note you must fill in your date of birth and signature (unless you have a waiver), so that the Constituency Returning Officer can confirm that you are the person the postal pack was sent to and that you are entitled to vote.

Important:  Where there is more than one postal voter in your household, take care that you do not mix these up.  Ensure that you complete the correct postal voting statement otherwise your vote may be rejected.

Lost or not received postal votes

If you haven’t received your postal pack by 23 April 2021, or you have lost your pack, call our helpline for advice

Tel: (01294) 324710

We are required by law to seek confirmation of your identity before issuing a replacement pack – this could be your passport, driving licence, bus pass or student card.

If you don’t have any of these documents, then you can contact our helpline to find out what other forms of identification can be used.  You will need to make an appointment to come to either Saltcoats Town Hall or Cunninghame House, Irvine to collect your replacement and present your ID in person – no-one else can come on your behalf.

Please note that voting twice in this election is an offence which could result in a fine of up to £5,000 or imprisonment for up to six months unless you are voting on your own behalf and as a proxy for another person. If you have already sent back a completed pack you may be committing an offence by requesting another ballot.

We can only issue replacements for spoilt postal votes up until 10.00 p.m. on Thursday 6 May 2021.

‘Spoilt’ postal votes

If the damage is only superficial (e.g. a coffee spill) this won’t invalidate your vote.  Let it dry then clearly mark the ballot paper(s), complete your date of birth and sign (unless you have a waiver) the Postal Voting Statement.

If a ballot paper has been damaged and cannot be used you will need to return the damaged pack and apply for a replacement pack.  Call our helpline for advice

Tel:  (01294) 324710


We can reissue a pack any time after postal votes have been issued.

If you have accidentally detached the Postal Voting Statement, don’t worry, this isn’t a problem.  Put the Postal Voting Statement and envelope A, containing the completed ballot papers, into envelope B and send it back.

If someone has signed and dated your papers by mistake, score out the wrong date and signature and enter the correct date of birth below the boxes if necessary, and the correct signature, outside the signature box if necessary.  Do not use Tippex as this may invalidate your vote.

If you have made a mistake on your ballot paper, score out your vote. Make it very clear who you want to vote for. Do not sign or initial the change as this may identify you as the voter.  Do not use Tippex as this may invalidate your vote.

If you have sealed envelope B and discovered that you haven’t put all the documents in, open it carefully, put in the rest of the documents and re-seal.  You can use sticky tape.

If you need a replacement – you will need to make an appointment to come to Saltcoats Town Hall or Cunninghame House, Irvine to collect your replacement and present your ID in person.

We can only issue replacements for spoilt postal votes up until 10.00 p.m. on Thursday 6 May 2021.

Priority Postboxes

Royal Mail has 35,000 Priority Post Boxes which have late collection times and in many cases these Priority Post Boxes will also have an earlier collection as well.  These have been established mainly to deal with the collection and delivery of Covid test kits, but as Elections are also a priority, Royal Mail are offering voters the use of this enhanced collection service.

Of the 35,000 Priority Post Boxes 15,000 of them also have a collection between 15.00 and 17.00 on both Saturday and Sunday.

To find your nearest Priority Postbox click here